Join me during December as I count down ten tips for practicing self-care during the stressful festive season.
Sleep patterns can be quite disrupted at this time of year. You may be having more late nights socialising or meeting deadlines at work, sleeping in on days off, eating differently to usual, or staying up late wrapping presents and preparing food for the big day!
Sleep deprivation can have significant effects, causing fatigue, poor concentration and memory, irritability, low motivation, reduced work efficiency, and poor judgement. Not only does this disrupt daily life, but can lead to disastrous consequences such as road accidents.
There are many things you can do to improve your sleep; here are a few tips to get you started:
- Avoid caffeine late in the day. A nice cup of coffee (or three) when the afternoon fatigue hits might seem appealing at the time, but for many people it will end up disrupting sleep and compounding the problem. Keep caffeine to the mornings or early afternoon whenever possible.
- Heavy meals within the last few hours before bed can make it more difficult to get to sleep. If you are having a late meal, select something light.
- Avoid too much alcohol, especially in the evening. Alcohol does make you sleepy, but it reduces your quality of sleep as you rouse more frequently, and will feel less refreshed the following day. Try to give yourself at least two hours with no alcohol intake before bed.
- Avoid discussing anything stressful for the last two hours before bed. If you need to discuss or think about things such as finances, planning, or relationships, schedule it for another time, well away from bed time! Try to spend the last couple of hours before bed doing something relaxing or enjoyable.
If sleep is a big issue for you, have a read through my previous blog post where I cover it in more detail.
Over the next few days, I will be sharing more tips to reduce stress and improve wellbeing over the festive season. If you missed the last post about keeping active, you can find it here. To make sure you don’t miss the rest, you can follow me on Facebook, sign up for my emails, join my Facebook group, or simply check back in on my website!